Letters

Letters 05-02-2016

Facts About Trails I would like to correct some misinformation provided in Kristi Kates’ article about the Shore-to-Shore Trail in your April 18 issue. The Shore-to-Shore Trail is not the longest continuous trail in the Lower Peninsula. That honor belongs to the North Country Trail (NCT), which stretches for over 400 miles in the Lower Peninsula. In fact, 100 miles of the NCT is within a 30-minute drive of Traverse City, and is maintained by the Grand Traverse Hiking Club...

North Korea Is Bluffing I eagerly read Jack Segal’s columns and attend his lectures whenever possible. However, I think his April 24th column falls into an all too common trap. He casually refers to a nuclear-armed North Korea when there is no proof whatever that North Korea has any such weapons. Sure, they have set off some underground explosions but so what? Tonga could do that. Every nuclear-armed country on Earth has carried out at least one aboveground test, just to prove they could do it if for no other reason. All we have is North Korea’s word for their supposed capabilities, which is no proof at all...

Double Dipping? In Greg Shy’s recent letter, he indicated that his Social Security benefit was being unfairly reduced simply due to the fact that he worked for the government. Somehow I think something is missing here. As I read it this law is only for those who worked for the government and are getting a pension from us generous taxpayers. Now Greg wants his pension and he also wants a full measure of Social Security benefits even though he did not pay into Social Security...

Critical Thinking Needed Our media gives ample coverage to some presidential candidates calling each other a liar and a sleaze bag. While entertaining to some, this certainly should lower one’s respect for either candidate. This race to the bottom comes as no surprise given their lack of respect for the rigors of critical thinking. The world’s esteemed scientists take great steps to preserve the integrity of their findings. Not only are their findings peer reviewed by fellow experts in their specialty, whenever possible the findings are cross-checked by independent studies...

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It‘s Never too Late for Triathlon: Janet Weiler Tackles Chicago at Age 68

Mary Bevans Gillett - January 27th, 2005
At age 68, many people are thinking about slowing down and relaxing into retirement. Janet Weiler turned 68 and decided to compete in her first triathlon.
Weiler’s running shoes have seen their share of competition during the past year, having completed the Detroit Marathon on October 24. She also competed in the Interlochen and Chicago Triathlons as well as the Chicago Marathon, where she joined family, friends and 32,000 other runners in a trek through the Windy City.
The Weiler family ran as a group, joined by all three of her children and one son’s girlfriend. “I think one son (a serious bicyclist from California) came to really appreciate marathons … I’m not sure that he’ll ever do another one.”

MAKING THE SWITCH
After competing in several marathons, Weiler decided to turn her attention to triathlons instead.
“I’m a hiker, a biker and I love to swim,” she said. “After running the Chicago Marathon, I thought that it might be better on my body if I wasn’t pounding the same muscles over and over again.”
So Weiler, who has lived in Empire for the past 10 years, began training for the Olympic length competition consisting of a six-mile run, 26-mile bike ride and a one-mile swim. She completed both in just under four hours – 3:49 in Interlochen and 3:38 in Chicago, crediting the improved Chicago time to flat terrain.
“At Interlochen you finish running with a gigantic hill right at the end,” Weiler said. “It went straight up and I just groaned. That was the 11-minute difference.”
Weiler took first place in her age class in Chicago, and continues a daily training regimen which includes a one mile swim every day during the summer as well as frequent trips to the biking and hiking trails.
“It’s much more interesting to train,” Weiler said, “It’s seems less concentrated but I’m convinced it’s better for your body.”

EARLY BLOOMER
Weiler’s love of sports began early. She was a cheerleader in her West Lafayette High School Class of 1954, but found most ‘official’ high school sports off limits to girls. An avid tennis player, she had to play pick-up games with Purdue students to get the chance to hit the courts.
“Physical fitness for women wasn’t valued,” Weiler said, noting that, as a result, you don’t see many older women competing in marathons or triathlons alongside the men.
“But I suspect this generation of 30-40 year olds will be different... I predict that they will do these difficult sports for a very long time.”
Weiler has been pleased with the response she’s received as an older athlete.
“At first I thought others would wonder what I was doing there,” she said, “but just the opposite was true…several actually said, ‘I hope that’s where I’ll be when I’m your age.”
“There is so much camaraderie and support,” Weiler said. “Most people just want to finish and they encourage each other. There aren’t many endeavors in life that there’s that much encouragement and camaraderie.
“It’s just marvelous!” she said. “After Chicago, my son said, ‘you’re a rock star.’”
 
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